McConnell issued a statement from the Senate floor, “The bill I move to, which will not have underlying immigration text, will have an amendment process that will ensure a level playing field at the outset.”
The comments made by the GOP leaders is the first time anything has been said about the legislations that they will or will not be used to set the Senate’s ‘base’ bill in the debate next week. However, it is expected to use it as a vehicle for the immigration debate.
On Wednesday, he further elaborated that senators from both sides will have an option to “alternate proposals for consideration and for votes.”
“While I obviously cannot guarantee any outcome, let alone supermajority support, I can ensure the process is fair to all sides, and that is what I intend to do,” he continued.
When McConnell will receive an approval from the chamber to fund the government and lift budget caps, he is expected to tee up the Senate’s base legislation in the coming days. The move could pave the way for a free-wheeling debate on the Senate floor next week.
Over a couple of months, there have been multiple internal disparities lined up that resulted in a heated debate on immigration. The immigration bill was indeed a ‘political lighting rod’ for both parties where President Trump announced a government shutdown in case demands are not met. The announcement changed the entire scenario.
Apart from this, the no. 2’s group that includes the Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Reps. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) failed to get a broad agreement favored by the White House.
The latest agreement passed by the Senate sees an increase in the defense and nondefense spending for the fiscal year 2018 and 2019. Mitch McConnell hailed this as an accomplishment.
“For the first time in years, our armed forces will have more of the resources they need to keep America safe. It will help us serve the veterans who bravely served us,” he added.
According to the GOP aide, the agreement now offers nearly $700 billion and $716 billion for defense spending in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
However, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) thinks that the increase is too much and should not have been done.
“Military spending and defense spending is far above the president’s request,” he stated in a statement. “I’m all for supporting our military and I want to make sure they’re funded properly. It’s very difficult to have that big an increase in one year and then be able to use it wisely.”